The Vietnam War, Hands of a Nation

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The photojournalist Eddie Adams, who covered the Vietnam War for the Associated Press, not only captured the action and chaos but took the time to get up close to the Vietnamese people whenever he could. In 1968, he undertook a project called “Hands of a Nation,” taking intimate photos of the hands of Vietnamese soldiers and civilians. Their hands were busy doing so many things then: reaching out for medicine, grasping weapons, straining against bindings, soothing, praying, rebuilding. Adams photographed hands young and old, belonging to the healthy and the wounded, the living and the dead. Be sure to also see part 1 and part 2 on Atlantic.